Apple AirPods To Soon Track Your Activity; Here’s How The System Will Work


Your Apple Watch or any other smartwatch might not be enough to track all your exercise routines. Apple has filed for a patent that shows how its AirPods models will be able to keep track of users' physical activity. The filing was reported by Apple Insider on February 17 about a patent called "Wireless Ear Bud System With Pose Detection."


Apple AirPods

As per the report, the patent proposes that Apple's audio accessory "may have sensors to gather orientation information such as accelerometer measurements during user movements. A host electronic device may communicate wirelessly with the earbuds and may form part of an earbud system that supplies the user with coaching and feedback while evaluating user performance of a head movement routine or other exercise routines."

AirPods Coming To Apple’s Fitness Ecosystem

AirPods Coming To Apple’s Fitness Ecosystem

If the company manages to get the patent, AirPods' sensors will likely be used to detect the physical movements of the users, enabling devices such as smartphones or smartwatches to determine if users have perfectly done their workouts.

As of now, Apple Watch comes equipped with sensors that can sense the kind of exercise a user is doing based on the movements they make, such as running; however, the notification pops up after some time into the workout if users forget to set it at the start. The sensor measures the heart rate of the user to determine if they are exercising or walking around.

No More Cheating On Workouts

No More Cheating On Workouts

The AirPods will take this a notch higher, collecting data on users' movements and poses and offering audible feedback based on the data it collected. For instance, if a user's Apple Fitness+ trainer asks them to turn their head to the left, but the user is unable to do so due to a stiff neck.

In such cases, their AirPods can encourage them by saying "Keep trying!" If the trainer tells them to move their arm, leg, or any other part, the audio feedback might change with the aid of Spatial Audio. "Feedback such as audible feedback may be provided to a user based on evaluation of user performance of the head movement routine," the patent notes. "Other suitable actions may be taken such as issuing performance reports and alerts."

Can Existing AirPods Models Get This Feature?

Can Existing AirPods Models Get This Feature?

What's interesting is that the patent doesn't indicate any hardware required for this new feature on the AirPods. The existing Apple AirPods Pro and AirPods 3rd Gen already come equipped with motion and voice accelerometers, as do the Beats Fit Pro.

Currently, these sensors are used to activate Spatial Audio, but they can be employed in the way the patent depicts. Apple will likely release a firmware update to bring this new feature to the table. However, the patent doesn't completely rule out the possibility of additional sensors such as compasses, gyroscopes, or even echolocation sensors. So, Apple could launch a new AirPods version with activity tracking features.

The AirPods are already being used by people to pair with Peloton workout machines, enabling them to listen to their instructors. While their Peloton instructor might not be able to tell if the users are cheating on their workouts, the AirPods with new features will, if the patent gets approved.

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